The Bug Geek

Insects. Doing Science. Other awesome, geeky stuff.

Post-hoc Moth Week: Day 5

NMW Day five!  Both of today’s moths are found nearly continent-wide but they differ in their feeding habits.

This one is a subtle beauty…pale and soft but also regal. It’s a White Speck, Mythimna unipuncta, also called the Armyworm moth. The caterpillars are generalists, feeding on many kinds of crops, veggies and other plants – it can be quite pesty, actually.  It’s a common and widespread moth, found everywhere in North America but the arctic Canadian Territories and Alaska.

White Speck (Mythimna unipuncta) #10438

Next up is the Common Gluphisia, Gluphisia septentrionis. This one is known to occur everywhere except Nunavut and the Northwest Territories – talk about a range!  Unlike the White Speck, however, it is a specialist feeder, preferring Poplar (Populus spp.) as its host.

Common Gluphisia (Gluphisia septentrionis) #7931

5 responses to “Post-hoc Moth Week: Day 5

  1. Brittanie August 4, 2012 at 1:05 AM

    Mythimna unipuncta was so plentiful this year it is ridiculous….wonderfully so. I have one in a jar with me as I type this that I found in my house about an hour or so ago.

    Beautiful moths indeed. Gluphisia septentrionis I’ve yet to see. I’m hoping to observe one. Gorgeous findings and photos.

    • TGIQ August 4, 2012 at 3:45 PM

      Even though I’ve never tried IDing my backyard moths until this summer, I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen the Gluphisia before – the overall body shape and wing pattern seemed quite new to me. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  2. macromite August 4, 2012 at 10:32 AM

    We had a Mythimna oxygala come to our black light last week. Elegant in its simplicity, even if it is a pest.

  3. Pingback: Post-hoc Moth Week: Day 6 (last day!) « The Bug Geek

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